UHealth committed to serving the community

The University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine is the oldest medical school in Florida and has participated in the professional lives of the majority of practitioners in the state, either through undergraduate, graduate or continuing medical education. With almost 10,000 professionals and staff and facilities in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, Collier and Monroe counties, it is a major contributor to the vibrancy and economic success of this community.

It has steadfastly delivered care to every part of our community — from the most affluent to the most unfortunate. It has routinely and continuously served every public program — from Medicare to Medicaid to state-sponsored programs for the uninsured. When there was a disaster in our region like the earthquake in Haiti we were there — and still are there long after others have left.

During a period of economic downturn, which has affected global and local economies, we have grown. We have brought incredible talent to this community, establishing new programs in genetics, stem cells and life-saving therapies. We have continued to invest in programs that are recognized nationally — for the ninth year Bascom Palmer Eye Institute is ranked best in the world; our trauma program not only serves this community, it also serves the world through unique telemedicine and robotic technologies; and our Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center is saving lives every day in South Florida.

The Life Science and Technology Park, which promotes biotechnology and other medical technologies — the first in South Florida — is a consequence of our success.

Like every healthcare institution, we are challenged by the impact of important changes that we support — like coverage for all — and other changes that are beyond our control. And like government, large and small businesses and families, we have had to adjust how we manage and budget and focus on being “healthy” in tough times. We have made difficult decisions to make sure that our commitments to great care, breakthrough research and training the next generation of healthcare leaders are sustainable.

Over the past several months, rumors, tension and stories have arisen out of the stresses that this community must face together. The legacy relationship between Jackson Health System and UM is important to this community and its future. We have stayed focused and continued to work constructively with leaders at Jackson, and we are making progress to deliver important programs in transplant, trauma, behavioral health and other disciplines with our partners at Jackson.

Looking forward, we are going to continue to build and contribute to this community by delivering great care — in our current facilities and through existing and new collaborative partnerships that share the excellence of academic healthcare with the community. We are UHealth — relentless in our pursuit of doing great things and passionate about serving all.

Pascal J. Goldschmidt, M.D., senior vice president for medical affairs, dean and CEO, UM Miller School of Medicine, Miami

Jack Lord, M.D., chief operating officer, vice president for medical administration, UM Miller School of Medicine, Miami